Sharing the Gospel of Jesus…in a bar…yeah…a bar (pt3)

by Craig on July 6, 2012

Sharing the Gospel of Jesus in a bar...yup...a barsource

The atheist in the crowd asked just the right question, “So everything is our fault?”

This is part three of an unexpected debate with atheists and agnostics…part one of sharing the gospel in sports bar is here and two is here.

But I do need to tell you, the words and attitudes of these guys are distinctively not Christian, not proper, or in any way pure…still, they are real. But then, lest we forget, the world is neither pure, nor proper, nor Christian.

Anyway…

at first it caught me off guard that those true theological words would come from him. I paused long enough for him to gather confidence and fire another salvo.

“See,” said Chris, “Nothing controls better than guilt and fear.”

And I found that a sad statement, and replied, “No guilt, no fear. I mess up Chris – everybody does. We’re all mess up factories. You really find it hard to believe that humanity’s constant mess ups would merit judgment from a perfect Creator? And control? Sure, I give up some control to the One who created and sustains everything. But no guilt Chris, no fear – just love.”

The gospel of Jesus is "no fear, no guilt, just love"source

 

One of the other five, Tim, interjected here, “Yeah, think about the love of God – making women as endlessly attractive as they are!”

“Amen Tim.”  I replied quickly.

It was a nod to him, and an insertion of a “religious” term. I think both intentional. To not acknowledge the atmosphere we were in would’ve been silly. Plus I agreed with him. I heart women to no end.

And it’s funny, the other guys could all have checked out of the conversation at any time. But they were all riveted.

Then Chris responded to Tim, “Attraction has nothing to do with God. It’s just an incentive from nature. We’re like robots. We do things that feel good and avoid things that feel bad. Kinda depressing if you ask me.”

And I wondered, how many times would Chris, an atheist, say such important theological statements.

It is all our fault.
It is a giving up of control.
It isn’t about fear or guilt.

Without God we are just robots.

I would then cede ground to Chris, while at the same time gaining ground.

“You’re right Chris….
If there is no God…
this “feeling good” thing is all there is…
then we die…
then there’s nothing.”

I continued, “If that’s the case then nothing, from “feeling good” to “feeling bad” – to “not feeling at all” means anything. If there isn’t a God it’s more than depressing, Chris. Everything is meaningless.

If there is no God…


Suddenly there were raised and thinking eyebrows on four faces…two were holding out.

There is more to this conversation…and it ends up really nicely…please come back.

{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

Craig July 6, 2012 at 12:20 pm

And you guys – I am still battling the “there and nowhere”. I suspect it’ll be a while. It’s a struggle to just get these words up. But I have read EVERY Comment. And will respond to them. I’m trying…I’ll get there…thank you guys so much for sticking around through this.

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Kristin July 6, 2012 at 3:24 pm

What a way to keep us hanging! 😉 I hope I don’t miss the end of this!
By the way, you don’t have to respond to me, it’s ok! Really! :)

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Craig July 11, 2012 at 9:25 am

Kristin, it’s been six weeks of this sleep deprived madness – I can’t wait around for it to go away, first step. Writing regularly, second step answering comments. Finally, third step reading others I heart. I’m almost squarely in step one now, plunging into step two – and soon. Step three. The battle isn’t over – but this battle really is the Lord’s.

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Layla Payton July 6, 2012 at 8:15 pm

Not. Going. Anywhere.

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Craig July 11, 2012 at 9:26 am

fighting the good fight (◕‿◕)

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A. July 6, 2012 at 9:20 pm

This is good, Craig. You do good even when you are in the midst of your struggles.
Bless you and still more prayers.

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Craig July 11, 2012 at 9:28 am

A. I don’t do good in the middle of struggle – I mess up in the middle of struggle – but here’s to messing up less – doing more good – pushing away – far away from “there and nowhere” – or at least controlling it. God bless you my friend.

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Martha Orlando July 7, 2012 at 10:59 am

Another fascinating installment, Craig. I can’t wait for the next one. And, don’t worry about responding, my friend, just get well.
Blessings!

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Craig July 11, 2012 at 9:31 am

Martha, you’ve always been so kind, I need to start responding, I need to keep writing, I need to keep fighting this – and not being alone – that helps. Soon I’ll be back to reading – I promise – this may never go away – it may just be one more thorn in the side – I’ll have to control it more than it controls me – all the while being controlled more and more by HIM. Thank you Martha, and God bless you my friend.

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nancy July 7, 2012 at 1:33 pm

hi Craig – just glad to get to keep reading you. and you don’t have to respond to me either, just keep writing. looking forward to more. God bless you.

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Craig July 11, 2012 at 9:33 am

Nancy, thank you for saying not to respond to you – but I need to. I need to fight harder through this, pray more through this, connect more through this – having you around has been awfully helpful – thank you for reading, thank you for being here, I’m glad you keep reading me to. (◕‿◕) The battle is the Lord’s – we keep fighting until we see daylight. God bless you, Nancy.

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Katie July 7, 2012 at 6:12 pm

Keep writing Craig! I am encouraged by it and it helps me think things through, sometimes in ways I haven’t before.

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Craig July 11, 2012 at 9:35 am

piece by piece. I will either beat this thing or control this thing – further and further from “there and nowhere.” Less influenced by it – more influenced by HIM – and you, my friend, have been a great help. Thank you Katie. God bless you and keep you.

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Debbie July 11, 2012 at 7:13 am

I am amazed at how this all took place and at how He uses you, works through you. God bless you, strengthen you, heal you and give you rest. And of course, we are all for you and there is no need to extend your energy further by replying. Use it for writing more posts when you can! :)

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Craig July 11, 2012 at 9:38 am

I have really, just for the longest time wanted to be used by HIM. I disqualified myself on many occasions, I didn’t even go running to him about this until after it was in full swing – and obviously too late. His help is coming. Doctors and psychiatrists are good – but the battle really is HIS – and mine – I keep doing what I need to keep doing – I’ll keep fighting – I’ll just keep fighting until I see daylight – first step – writing regularly, second step answering comments, third step reading others that I heart – that means you. God bless you, Debbie, you have been one of the true blessings of this place. I don’t know what struggles you’re facing – but I just prayed for you my friend.

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